Cloud Power, Fear of Lock-in Grows Among IT Managers


Computer gaming is having a big impact on how well humans can interact with computers and will accelerate the application of compute power to more areas of human activity, according to the redoubtable Mary Meeker’s annual Global Internet Trends survey.

Both the public and private cloud are growing in share of the IT budgets. At the same time, however, there appears to be an increasing fear among IT managers of cloud vendor technology lock-in.

Meeker makes a well-known, slide-rich presentation each year at the invitation-only CodeCon event, sponsored by the technology news site, Recode. This year’s event occurred May 30-June 1 in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif., and Meeker’s fellow Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner Alex Kurland compiled the cloud trends part of the presentation. Kurland cited evidence that the major cloud providers are generating a new round of lock-in fear.

Kurland’s data on lock-in fears, however, is already aging. It was drawn primarily from the Bain consulting group’s Cloud Computing Survey, citing the years 2012 versus 2015. In 2012, the chief concerns were data security and cost uncertainty in the cloud. In 2015, the chief concerns were data compliance/governance and vendor lock-in. In 2012, data security commanded the top worry spot for 42%, with uncertainty over costs a close runner-up at 38%. In 2015, those concerns were on the decline at 35% and 21%, respectively. Rising as a top concern was vendor lock-in, on the minds of just 7% in 2012 but rising to 22% in 2015, and data governance/compliance, rising from 21% to 27% over the same period.

Figures cited from the Rightscale State of the Cloud report for 2017 report divided up the cloud market between four vendors, with Amazon Web Services still the distinct leader. It maintained a 57% share of the public cloud market, a level that was unchanged from the year before. Microsoft accounted for 34% of the market in 2017, up from 20% the year before. And Google accounted for 15%, up from 10% the year before. IBM showed a more modest growth rate from 7% to 8% of the market between 2016 and 2017, according to Meeker’s presentation.

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